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Kevin loses marathon clash

Kevin Anderson, our top-ranked tennis player, played the match of his life at Wimbledon yesterday but failed to go through to the second round.

Up against Russian seventh seed Nikolay Davydendo, Anderson slugged it out for just over four hours before going down 3-6 6-7 (3) 7-6 (3) 7-5 9-7.

Never at this best on clay, Davydenko lost the first two sets to the lanky South African and it seemed an upset was on the cards.

But not for nothing did 29-year-old Davydenko win the ATP World Tour finals, also in London, late last year and he held his nerve to pull through.

This was despite Johannesburg’s Anderson slamming down 36 aces to his opponent’s nine on the lush grass of Court One.

History had seemed to give Anderson a sniff at victory as Davydenko had crashed out in the first round in five of his last eight Wimbledon attempts.

Anderson even forged a break in the third set and took a 4-2 lead but once Davydenko had taken control of the tiebreak and sealed the set, the writing was on the wall, despite a marathon 9-7 final set.


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